Photos: Chris Setter
Ester is the type of place any neighborhood would love. You will find this intimate, candlelit wine bar and event space in Ridgewood, Queens. Operated by Ashley Newsome and designer/owner Kermit Westergaard, the welcoming space is sun-drenched and vibrant with lush greenery by day and glowing with wood burning firelight by night.
Ester (named after Newsome’s father) invites neighborhood residents and beyond to enjoy a robust selection of natural wines and small plates in a serene, understated setting. The wine and food menu is accessible to all budgets and wine is offered by the bottle, glass, and half-glass. An offering unique to Ester is that each evening’s first patrons get to choose which bottles will be available by the glass that evening.
Newsome notes, “We offer simple wines from producers who follow natural and biodynamic farming practices. You can expect an ever changing bottle list with wines mostly from Europe. We especially love deep colored rosés, coastal red wines from Italy, white and skin contact wines from Austria, Slovenia or Catalonia and anything that reminds us of a dry sherry.” Local Ridgewood beers are also available on tap.
In addition to sweet and salty nuts, charcuterie, and simple items like jamón with roasted tomato and butter on toast, highlights on the small plates menu include creme fraiche topped with salmon roe and served with potato chips; rich mushroom broth with sake and black rice; and the not to be missed panna cotta drizzled with husk cherries and fresh mint.
The inviting bar and event space, both lovingly designed by Westergaard, are detailed with tin ceilings, a zinc bartop, exposed beams, handmade Moroccan tiles, and repurposed wood paneling from retired water towers.
Ester is located at 467 Woodward Ave (near Dekalb), Ridgeweood, Queens (646) 543-6430
For more information, visit www.ester.nyc